Jammu: Braving terror threats and harsh weather conditions, panchayat members turned out in large numbers on Monday to elect Legislative Council members under the panchayat quota.
A turn-out of over 92 percent was recorded in the Jammu region till 4 pm, with the militancy-infested areas registering 96 percent voting, officials said.
"We have vote for democracy and strengthening of the panchayati raj institutions in Jammu and Kashmir. It was also a vote against threats issued by the militants from across the border," said Anil Sharma, general secretary of All Jammu and Kashmir Panchayat Conference (AJKPC).
He said AJKPC, which had earlier given a boycott call for the polls following non-implementation of 73rd and 74th Amendments of the Constitution, decided to take part in the elections to give a befitting reply to the terror groups following threats by them.
As per reports in a section of media in the state, Hizb-ul Mujahideen chief Syed Salahuddin had last month said that New Delhi was "exploiting panchs and sarpanchs to project Kashmir as pro-India" and that they will "continue to be targeted no matter how much government tries to secure them."